Monday, 17 August 2009

Where in the world is Bilbo? Cumbria, England


Very confusing because Bilbo has come to visit Bilbo ... and he was not offended when comments were made that a nice slim elf would have been welcome too. He could not have arrived at a more interesting time, our normally staid and gentle lives are abandoned for travel and excitement!

On Tuesday, Bilbo recovered from his journey north and spent some time familiarising himself with his base for the next few days. Bag End can be a bit of a jungle and Bilbo is only a little chap ...

Dwarfed by the forest of Swiss Chard, our only edible crop this year (seeds from Mrs Flummery)

Larking around in the log pile

Camouflaged by comfrey

Checking out the Red Squirrel food

"It's a jungle out there!"

On Wednesday he settled into the front seat of Hattie the Honda for a 200 mile journey south and his first visit to Birmingham. He hadn't stayed in a hotel before but was a courteous room-mate and did not snore.

On Thursday he enjoyed the opening day of the Festival of Quilts, the largest quilting and textile event in Europe. No pictures 'cos there were no gardens.

Full of adrenalin he joined the party on Thursday night when we were entertained by Sewali, FatCat and her wonderful Lumberjack. Bilbo was intrigued by Lumberjack's greenhouse full of insectiverous plants and wondered if they were capable of consuming the odd Orc or two?

A quite amazing collection of sarracenia
Bilbo admiring some of the best hanging baskets he'd ever seen.

On Monday he visited the beautiful and often over-looked Cumbrian town of Cockermouth. At the hairdresser he declined a little beard-trimming but perked up at the sight of our wonderful Jennings Brewery, and - with apologies to Matron - decreed that Sneck Lifter was one of the finest brews in the land (as confirmed at the Brewing Industry International Awards in Munich).

He was very impressed with the walled garden at the Wordsworth House although we had to explain it was the wrong time of year for a Host of Golden Daffodils.

Bilbo is running off to sneak a look at the river, click on picture to enlarge, the garden is beautiful at this time of year

Not content with a 400 mile round trip to Birmingham, late on Monday afternoon Bilbo jumped back in the car and snoozed all the way to Bridgwater in Somerset where BilboWaggins and Management spent a short while helping Management's Mum get her house ready to sell. It only has a small garden which is very low maintenance and the heather is looking splendid.

Bilbo is now COMPLETELY EXHAUSTED. He thought he was coming to the Lake District for a relaxing break but has travelled an additional 1,100 miles by car. He'd like to continue his world tour but with someone who is not going to wear out his poor little legs!


  1. Now I understand the Bilbo comments on your bl;og.

    I though you'd been spammed!!

    He's welcome to come here, but he might be equally as exhausted as he'd have to go north back to the Lakes on holiday or if he arrived aerlier on the odd walk in the Peak District. Mind I'd have to do some weding before he'd want to be photographed in my garden!!

  2. You're mad!(gg). I wonder if he'd like a short trip down the road to me. I've only got a small garden though, but perhaps I could take him visiting? Oh, and he could come to a quilt show with me next week.

  3. I sure Bilbo would love to visit the Capital of Florida...North Florida, USA...Great post! He needs to get back to the states..

  4. I love your Bilbo post. He looks like he had a great time especially at the pub drinking some good beer. Send him to me.

  5. Glad to hear that Bilbo enjoyed the strong Northern Brew!

  6. It's beautiful where you are. How lucky to get to go on the tour with Bilbo and Bilbo. Bilbo has already visited me, I just wanted to come by and see his tour.

  7. Hello :) I'd be happy to have Bilbo in Kent.

  8. He's more than welcome to help out at our allotment, borrow the spare bike or hang out with our 3 lovely moggies. It's our wedding anniversary at the weekend but we promise he won't feel like a gooseberry!

  9. Hi Matron, taken from the Jennings website:

    In northern dialect sneck means door latch and a sneck lifter was a man’s last sixpence which enabled him to lift the latch of a pub door and buy himself a pint, hoping to meet friends there who might treat him to one or two more.

  10. Matron, meant to say, if you are near a branch of Waitrose, they used to stock Jennings and when we lived in Hampshire, occasionally Asda sold it too! Have a look at the Jennings website, you can buy it online. The brewery is about 2 miles from us and when they are boiling the hops we can see the smoke coming from the huge chimney.

    Sneck Lifter is a very rich, dark beer, amost chewy - if you like stout and liquorice flavours then this is a lovely brew.

  11. The Cockerhoop is a much lighter, hoppy bitter compared to the Sneck Lifter (which is liquoricy & a bit heavy going in my view) - Cockerhoop is sometimes sold on draft as a guest beer in one of our better local pubs here in the Midlands & very lovely it is too!

    See if you can get hold of a bottle of each, Matron & let us know what you think - knocks spots off your London Pride, in my view, anyway! {grin}

    Sorry, Bilbo - turning your blog into beer appreciation site...


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